James E. Randolph was born in 1888 to Frank and Lizzie Randolph of Frankford, Missouri. He was the oldest child of the family. Randolph remained in Missouri through college; he attended Lincoln University in Jefferson City. Following this, he was accepted into Meharry Medical College in Tennessee. There is little known about the activities and whereabouts of Randolph after he completed medical school, but records indicate he moved to Covington in 1922. There he became the first Black person on staff at the St. Elizabeth Hospital. In addition, he delivered almost all of the Black children born in the hospital in Northern Kentucky from 1922 to 1958. In 1981, at the age of 93, Dr. Randolph passed away.
In 1997, he was posthumously inducted into the Northern Kentucky Leadership Hall of Fame. In addition to this commemoration, the Eastside Neighborhood Park is named in his honor.
Marker #2152 was dedicated in 2004 by the Kentucky Historical Society and the Kentucky Department of Highways. It reads: Dr. James E. Randolph (1888-1981). Born in Missouri, Randolph earned a medical degree from Meharry College in Nashville, Tenn., in 1917. He moved to Covington in 1922 and opened an office on Greenup St., where he practiced for 59 years. He was the first African American physician at St. Elizabeth Hospital and the first to be admitted to the Campbell-Kenton Medical Society. (Reverse) Dr. James E. Randolph. Among Dr. Randolph’s several honors are the La Salette Academy’s Gold Medal for service to the community (1976) and the Eastside Neighborhood Park that bears his name (1974). In 1997, he was posthumously inducted into the Northern Ky. Leadership Hall of Fame. Randolph is buried at Mary Smith Cemetery in Elsmere, Ky. Presented by City of Covington.